What will this country be like to live in in five years?


Kinda useless, particularly as my model of reality is based on the notion of changefulness and made up words.

I’ll try though. Taming my instincts to ramble between hippyish idealism and brutal pessimism. Except of course, I won’t tame it at all, because that’s how I roll.

Except in the future we won’t need rolls. Hovercars for all and protein pills to feed us all.

Will capitalism survive the next round of shattering collapses? Will the market’s invisible hand have righted itself? Will we have run out of oil yet? Will we have solved fusion and be preparing for limitless guilt free energy? Will a nanoplague have eaten us all, leaving behind nothing but grey sludge? Will we all be waving, or drowning?

It’s going to be some interesting years, worldwide, but it currently feels like this country is acting too slow to really catch on. As soon as you get down to national scale, it’s hard to not get caught up on relatively petty minutiae. It’s one of the biggest flaws of nations as a notion. Encouraging an inward focus. Ignoring the big picture, and getting obsessed with tiny details.

Of course, on this sort of scale, each of our lives is a tiny detail, so you can see the appeal. I lament obvious realities as if alternatives are easy. I don’t think it’s a matter of will.

In 2017, we will have a different government. If the economy doesn’t recover in the next three years, we’ll no longer be under the conservatives, in theory. Of course, we still may be under roughly the same policies, as Labour haven’t presented anything even roughly analogous to an alternative. The swings each way are tiny.

But then, another few years of economic torture and weirdness, and maybe the people will start to really see the need for alternatives. Maybe the big society will really kick off and start fixing things from the ground up. Slowly dismantling our governance under the guise of conservatism, and in fact generating new locally motivated syndicates of people. Co-operativised governance.

Or maybe ruthless businesses will have bought everything up and there’ll be nothing left of this country but autophagic money machines.

The NHS and the BBC may have gone the way of BR. A sold off acronym, an injection of cash in exchange for an institution that thinks differently, that makes the country, and the world, different.

Or maybe, we’ll be the first country to realise just how fucked up we are. Maybe we’ll start tearing down our world and rebuilding it without using the corpses of others as our foundation. Maybe we’ll recognise ourselves as not bankrupt, just immensely greedy. Maybe we’ll give it all back and rebuild within our means.

Show the world that modern life doesn’t have to be like this.

Or maybe, more likely than anything, the country five years from now will simply be five years older. More wrinkled and wizened. More bitter. More lonely. Five years closer to death.


Illustration by Helen


About Alex Ava

Joiner of Dots. Player of Games. Unreliable Narrator. Dancing Fool.
This entry was posted in Illustrations by Helen, Questions by Martin. Bookmark the permalink.

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